Page last updated at 16:29 GMT, Thursday, 18 March 2010

Corrosion led to North Sea platform fire

Erskine platform [Pic: Chevron]
The fire happened on the Erskine platform earlier this year

A fire which damaged a North Sea gas platform was caused by a corroded ring which resulted in hydrocarbon release.

BBC Scotland revealed in January the blaze had happened on the unstaffed Erskine platform, which is 150 miles east of Aberdeen.

Operator Chevron said a carbon steel ring, fitted in a clamp connecting pipe work to a wellheads, had corroded and caused a release which led to the fire.

The source of ignition has not yet been identified, and is being investigated.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has issued an improvement notice requiring inspection of all similar clamps on the Erskine platform and any necessary action.

Eric Sirgo, general manager of operations for Chevron North Sea, said: "We place the highest importance on safe operations and we are thankful that no-one was hurt as a result of the incident and that there was no environmental impact.

"While it is too early to predict when production can be resumed from Erskine, teams are working on platform restoration and it currently appears that this will be sometime around mid-year."



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